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F.A.Q. Arts and Crafts Supplies

The MCMUA operates one of NJ's most comprehensive household hazardous waste (HHW) programs. This F.A.Q. page and information on hazardous materials is intended as a guide about HHW materials as well as the MCMUA's HHW program. This information is a general guide and does not constitute official rule, regulation or law.

Hazards

  • Certain art and crafts supplies may contain toxic materials, inhalation, ingestion and dermal exposure to which may present a health risk.
  • Certain solvent-based products may be flammable.
  • Certain products contain heavy metals that cause hazardous emissions from waste-to-energy facilities.
     

Handling

  • Know the contents of the materials you use; ask your supplier for a Material Safety Data Sheet or hotline for the product.
  • Look for warning label on the product. Art materials should be non-toxic if the manufacturer has appropriately labeled the product AP (approved product), CP (certified product), or HL (health label).
  • Use with caution, wear goggles and/or rubber gloves if needed.
  • Provide fresh air to your work area and wear appropriate mask, if needed.
  • Avoid procedures that create dust. Use wet sanding or dust heads to minimize dust levels.
  • Clean up wet spills with absorbent (kitty litter, vermiculite or rags). Keep cleanup materials in closed metal containers and away from heat sources to prevent spontaneous combustion.
  • Reduce hazards during mixing of clay, sanding, and glazing by using exhaust ventilation, such as a spray booth.
  • Use brushing or dipping methods when possible rather than spraying or airbrushing.
  • Use up products such as glues, adhesives, and solvents according to directions.
     

MCMUA's Facility Database

Management Options

  • If you have no further use for the product and it is in usable condition, try to give it away to someone who has a use for it.
  • Do not dispose of toxic art and craft supplies down the drain.
  • Aerosol Containers (empty or partially full): see page on "Aerosol Products"
  • Empty Non-Aerosol Containers and Hardened or Solid Non-Toxic Products: Dispose of these in the trash.
  • Liquid Non-Toxic Products: Evaporate or absorb liquid with cat litter or other absorbent and dispose in trash.
  • Toxic Products: Leftover paints containing toxics, such as cadmium and chromium, should not go in the trash; Overpack in tight container if danger of leaking. Save these materials for a household hazardous waste collection day or take to a commercial hazardous waste facility. Dried up toxic paints and adhesives can be put in the trash.
     

For more information about handling and disposal of arts and craft supplies, call Arts, Crafts and Theater Safety (ACTS) at 212-777-0062 or check their web page at http://www.artscraftstheatersafety.org/.